Title: Guiding Light
Characters/Pairings: Jack/Ianto, mentions the Doctor
Word Count: 571
Summary: There’s a light that always guides Jack home.
Spoilers: Slight for Doctor Who – Utopia/The Sound of Drums/Last of the Time Lords and The Stolen Earth/Journey’s End.
Warnings: Mentions of temporary canon character death (Jack).
Written For: My cottoncandy_bingo square Lighthouse.
Beta: The lovely lilyrose225, who volunteered without knowing what she was letting herself in for and did a wonderful job. Thank you!
Disclaimer: I don’t own Torchwood or any of the characters. Which is sad.
The first time Jack was really aware of it was after the Year That Never Was, though when he thought back he realised the feeling had been there for some time, he’d just never really paid attention to it before.
He used to think that once he finally found the Doctor again, he’d never return to Cardiff, or even earth. Time was when nothing meant more to him than the chance to travel through time and space again, never staying anywhere for long, keeping on the move, seeing everything there was to see and then some.
But something had changed. When time reset, even though the Doctor offered pretty much everything Jack had dreamed of for over a century he knew he couldn’t accept; it was no longer what his heart desired. The TARDIS would always be special to him, but she wasn’t his home anymore. There was something more important drawing him back, irresistibly, to a secret base hidden beneath a tourist attraction in the Welsh Capital.
He told the Doctor that he was going back there because he had a responsibility to his team and to earth, but that wasn’t the whole truth, merely part of the reason.
With every death and resurrection the feeling grew stronger; Jack found himself losing the desire to end it all and just stay gone for good. He wasn’t being dragged back reluctantly anymore; he was fighting with everything in him to get back as fast as possible, all because of one young Welshman who shone like a beacon in the darkness, guiding him home where he belonged, his arms the safe harbour Jack had been seeking for so long without ever realising.
Even though it was necessary for the sake of the entire planet, leaving again in search of the Doctor after the Daleks came proved harder than he would have believed possible. The only way he could do it at all was to just go without so much as a farewell kiss. One last look into stormy blue-grey eyes and with the simple press of a button he was gone, off to fight the good fight so that when it was over, his safe haven would still be there, waiting for his return. As soon as the earth had been towed back into place and the Doctor had dropped him off, Jack made straight for Cardiff by the fastest and most direct route he could find. Despite the mess, home had never looked so good.
Safe, secure, welcomed back with a kiss and a warm embrace, Jack knew he would choose this every time, but…
“Welcome home, Jack. To be honest, I wasn’t sure you’d be coming back.”
The words shocked him. After all this time how could Ianto not know?
“You listen to me, Ianto Jones. I will always, always come back to you, no matter what. Don’t you understand? You’re my lighthouse; whatever happens to me, wherever I have to go, your light will always guide me safely home. There’s nowhere in all of space and time I’d rather be than right here in your arms and if I have my way, I’ll never leave you again.”
And though the place they called home changed times beyond number, for the rest of eternity Jack Harkness kept his word, always being guided home by the shining beacon of light that was Ianto Jones, the man he loved more than anything.